Friday, September 30, 2011

WOW Whitehaven

We have stopped at Whitehaven Beach on Whitsunday Island a couple of times now. The first time we stopped it was cold, windy and foggy and I was thinking 'PFftttttt! What's all the fuss about?'.

But we went back for another visit about two weeks ago with my mum. It was a warm, sunny day and after a quick trip ashore with the kids I could see and feel what all the fuss was about!

The colours really are astonishing, and the sand...I couldn't help scrunching my toes and fingers in it repeatedly, it was amazingly soft!

The kids ran about and dug roads in the sand, while mum and I just kicked back and soaked it all up. It was beautiful. I am really looking forward to visiting again.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

More Bait Reef Beauty...

We had another aquatic day today on Bait Reef. Nick and I did some Powerdiving in the morning, and he managed to get these shots...

Nick has decided to try and capture more shots of fish...but they tend to move a tad more quickly than the its taking some time! I move a whole lot slower (than the fish, not the coral) I'm a relatively easy target.

(wish the occupant of this beauty was still at home)...

There will undoubtedly be more underwater pics to come, but I'll try and get some blue sky in too!

Bait Reef Snorkelling

Another lovely day here on the Great Barrier Reef yesterday. We all went snorkelling (well, not Eric, I stayed with him while dad took the kids in, then I went in later).

That's Emily's weight belt streaming out behind her. They don't seem to come in kiddy sizes, so it is a mile too long (we could cut it, but it might come in handy one day to hold on to her while she goes off....she is a very good snorkeller)

She dives too...and is miles better than me. I hate having to clear my snorkel when I come back up (and besides I'm a good bit more bouyant than her...;-)

PS. 99% of all the underwater shots are Nick's. He is part fish in the water...and can dive to great depths, steady himself and take a photo all in the time it takes me to breathe in and get my head under the water. I still can't believe he agreed to live in a land-locked Australian Territory (UGH...I just had a visual of diving in Lake Burley Griffin...and I nearly choked on my pancake!).

Saturday, September 24, 2011

The Stepping Stones, Bait Reef

We had another fun day yesterday. We moved from Hook Reef to Bait Reef, and went Powerdiving off the Stepping Stones...

It is still a tad windy here, but under the water you don't notice the wind so much (except that it tends to blow the floating Powerdive unit away, and I can sometimes feel it dragging me backwards).

It poured with rain here last night, which washed down the boat but unfortunately also soaked MY side of the bed....not so nice, but it'll dry out today.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Colourful Cateran Bay

If you check out our trip map here, and zoom way, way in over the Whitsunday Islands, you'll see that we have stopped in Cateran Bay (on the north side of Border Island) three times so far (if you can make any of it out at all, that is...we have been doing circles of the place, and its looking like a big scribble until you zoom right in). We started out snorkelling at Cateran Bay, but on the last stop we threw in the Power Dive unit and wow...we had a ball! The Powerdive doover is proving to be worth its weight in gold.

Apologies up front...this is another picture heavy post...

We'll definitely go back there again. It is a really lovely place, and apart from one encounter with a cranky cruiser who didn't know how to use his anchor (and was taking his frustrations out on us)...we have enjoyed every minute we've spent there.

It is a tad windy out here on Hook Reef today, so we've had the stereo cranked up and while the kids have been 'dancing' in the cockpit, Nick has been pulling apart our Harken you do while you are sitting out the wind behind a reef....and I've been photo editing.

Diving on Bait Reef

We are currently anchored behind Hook Reef on The Great Barrier Reef, and all I can see in every direction is amazingly blue ocean (and one or two other boats, and the reef...which is just coming out at low tide, as I write).

Yesterday we motored out here from Cateran Bay, and stopped briefly on the outer edge of Bait Reef on the way. We picked up the Manta Ray Drop-off public mooring and then chucked in the Powerdive unit and went for a quick paddle...

Apologies for the picture heavy post, but what more could I say? We came, we saw, we were impressed! This is a heavily visited area, which has also suffered some storm damage by the looks of it, but I for one am pretty easy to please when it comes to underwater adventuring. It also helped that the whole dive was accompanied by the sounds of whales singing, quite close by this time too!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

A Whale-y Good Breakfast...

Yesterday morning we were treated to the most amazing spectacle. We were anchored in Cateran Bay, Border Island (for the third time) and I had been watching the dorsal fin of a large whale quietly bobbing about just outside the bay, with a calf nearby. I'd not long gone inside to do some school work with Emily when people on a nearby yacht started cheering and yelling. We rushed outside and were greeted by the truly awesome sight of an adult Humpback whale breaching...less than 100 m from our boat!

The whale breached at least three times (that I heard/saw), which had all the yachts in the bay cheering and yelling for more, before it rolled over and began slapping the water with its flipper, almost like it was waving good bye.

I was too gobsmacked to catch her breaching on camera, but managed a slightly blurry shot of her farewell (I think that yacht behind us would have been less than 50 m from the action...hope they didn't choke on their Wheaties!!).

Monday, September 12, 2011

Dreamy Daydream

We had a lovely time at Daydream Island. They charge $55 per night for the use of one of their moorings, and for that price you also get to use the resort we did!

Nick and the kids...considering downsizing from Lucey Blue!

Eric and I sat under an umbrella on the lovely beach above and watched the fun... did the mermaids (well, they weren't under an umbrella...but you get my drift)...

We were having so much fun we were late leaving for Airlie Beach this afternoon...but with the current going in our direction we made 8kts over the ground, and got there well before the marina closed.

Everyone is pooped, and they are all in bed...which is exactly where I am headed now!